2014 Yorkshire Regional Championships — As it happened

All the action from the 2014 Yorkshire Regional Championships — as it happened.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 22:01:06

So that's Yorkshire Regional Championships over for another year. We hope you have enjoyed our coverage this weekend. Good night.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 21:32:44

Results: Championship Section

Championship Section:
Test Piece: 'St Magnus' - Kenneth Downie

Sunday 2nd March
Draw: 3pm
Commence: 4.30pm

Adjudicators: David Read MBE and Stephen Roberts

1. Brighouse & Rastrick (Prof. David King)**
2. Grimethorpe Colliery (Dr. Robert Childs)*
3. Carlton Main Frickley Colliery (Phillip McCann)**
4. Black Dyke (Dr Nicholas J Childs)*
5. Rothwell Temperance (David Roberts)
6. Marsden Silver Prize (Glyn Williams)
7. Hammonds Saltaire (Morgan Griffiths)
8. Skelmanthorpe (Martin Hall)
9. Yorkshire Imperial Urquhart Travel (Stig Maersk)
10. Hepworth (Michael Fowles)
11. Unite the Union (City of Sheffield) (David Hirst)
12. Drighlington (Jim Davies)
13. Hebden Bridge (Sean Conway)

**Pre-Qualified for National Final
* Qualified for National Final

Principal Cornet: Stuart Lingard, Brighouse & Rastrick
Instrumentalist: Kevin Crockford (Soprano Cornet) Grimethorpe Colliery
Soloist: Michael Dodd (Euphonium) Grimethorpe Colliery
Youngest Player: Adam Nield, 13 of Hepworth

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 20:57:11

4BR Editor's final prediction:

What a fine contest and what an ending.

It's Grimethorpe for us today, but so very close at the top with Brighouse second, Carlton Main third and Black Dyke fourth for us, just ahead of Rothwell and Marsden in sixth.

4BR Prediction:

1. Grimethorpe
2. Brighouse & Rastrick
3. Carlton Main Frickley
4. Black Dyke
5. Rothwell Temperance
6. Marsden Silver

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 20:55:45

Championship Section:

13. Carlton Main Frickley Colliery (Philip McCann)

A well conceived opening gives way to a speedy opening variation and a very lyrical following one.

The contrasts were stark - and some of the little nuances do rather leap out at you. MD is being very street wise here - making sure what he wants to be heard is brought to fore, and what he doesn't is tucked neatly out of the way.

More clever leadership - although it is backed up by a splendid euph and wonderful cornet at Var 4. There is a real trust in the musical instincts of his players here - and they reward his faith in him (including a fabulously swaggering rep) in spades all the way to the closing tuba.

There is a great deal to admire about his playing - not all fully consistent, but so well constructed and linked in pace and tempo.

Just starts to get scrappy in the finale and ride for home, but once again the MD is using all his considerable musical resources to the full. Can't quite hide the bit of bluff in places, but the last few bars are stonkers - no doubt about it.

Bravo. What a lovely reading - and such an intelligent use of resources. This was a performance that was filled with all the MDs years of experience and years of musical intellect, and his players did him proud.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 20:34:11

Championship Section:

12. Grimethorpe Colliery (Dr Robert Childs)

A confident opening is played at a notch up, but it becomes relative soon after with remarkable technical detail on display in a framework of such malleable musicality.

There are lovely subtle touches displayed here - from little rubatos to faded phrase endings. The pulse of the music is metronomic and the approach is so full of detail. There are the occasional minor moments of discomfort, but they do not dent the veneer all the way to the splendid tuba close to Var 4.

A comfort zone tempo is the perfect vehicle to display such razor sharp clarity - with a power reserve that is frightening at times. Just the occasional little blip or clip, but when top gear is engaged it thwacks you back into your seat.

Again - just the smallest little blips, but it cannot override the sense of excitement and sheer verve of this playing - the final section is scorching hot. Last few bars almost take the roof off the old hall.

Well now. So exciting, so full of forensic detail, so flowing and so well directed, but it did have a noticeable minor error count that wouldn't have gone unnoticed in the box. Still, for sheer bravura musicality and fizzing vibrancy it was for us, still the best of the day.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 20:10:24

Championship Section:

11. Drighlington (Jim Davies)

A confident start is built upon by the MD using his noggin and experience. Dynamics are kept in contrast and focus and the tempo does not kill off the clarity.

You can hear the obvious technical shortcomings, but the appreciation of tempo and dynamic means that it doesn't make your ears bleed. This is compact and coherent - if occasionally a touch scrappy, but bravo sop (who looks uncannily like a young Phil Spector in his glasses) who hits out a real wall of sound top D.

Not everything comes off in the following sections, but the musical flow is maintained despite the solo fragilities.

It starts to sound tired as we enter the finale and onwards - but that pulse is still maintained the MD. Tuning now goes a little AWOL but the band just has enough in the tank (and they are on fumes now) to make it to the end with a couple of thumping last chords.

An intelligent approach very nearly paid off for the MD and his band. Just a bit of rawness and tiredness at the end taking off an extra layer of well rehearsed polish or two.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 19:47:58

Championship Section:

10. Hebden Bridge (Sean Conway)

A confident opening promises much and it does develop along those lines, although the dynamic is on the rather healthy side to say the least. Sop has the knackers of a grand national winner - by heck he's giving it plenty.

It rather sums things up though - just a little less adrenaline would make this compact playing so much more effective. We haven't heard any dynamic contrast at all. Sop goes all Maynard Ferguson before Var 4!

Why is everyone so raucous? The music flows, the technical aspects seem in hand, but the dynamics are from another planet. What a pity - less (and we do mean much less) would have given this so much more.

Good tempo sense prevails - but the dynamics are incomprehensible. A tired and raw sounding band head for home leaving aural debris in their wake. The last few moments summed up their approach in a nutshell. A real missed opportunity this.

Why did a fine MD think that his band could conquer this piece on sheer volume alone? They were close to it technically, but all that went out of the window today. All rather dynamically senseless.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 19:31:06

Championship Section:

9. Skelmanthorpe (Martin Hall)

Another hesitant start that also takes time to settle as the first variation develops. There is a lovely flow to the music inspired by the MD, but the obvious fragilities in the technical aspects rob the music of the detail required to come to life.

MD is working hard - and so is his band, but the shortcoming are striking. Again the music has pulse and drive all the way to the sop nearly having a scanners moment and blowing the top of his head off with a brilliant top D.

Bravo euph and cornet - but the ensemble lacks clarity and precision despite fine tuba close.

A tired band finds it hard to change gear to really speed towards to end in the finale - and it is very edgy. MD once again does well to keep the drive and pulse going, but it becomes very scrappy as we make the final detour to the close and last few hard blown chords.

MD and band earned their stripes today on this one - with a performance that never let go, despite holding on by its bootstraps at times. A brave effort, well led by MD.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 19:10:53

Championship Section:

8. Marsden Silver (Glyn Williams)

A slightly uneven start, but it soon recovers with a touch of vibrancy about the playing that sparkles in the quicker section and is balanced by warm lyricism in the slower section.

Just loses focus and precision on occasions but the MD keeps driving things through - as does the banzai sop! Top trumps son, top trumps. He's just about topped by splendid euph and bravura cornet as the MD has the emotion seeping out from every pore here. There was red blooded passion on show here - right down to gravel throated Barry White tuba to close.

It just gets a bit scrappy after this - but this is heart on sleeve stuff that is highly enjoyable. More power to go with flashy filigree work that just for moment loses connection with ensemble, but it recovers despite a rawness to the tonality to push to a bold if slightly tired ending.

What a well worked account - that opted for passion and purpose and delivers it almost to a tee. You have to applaud the bravery of the approach and the character of the MD and players to really pull it off in such a manner.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 18:44:25

4BR Editor's halfway analysis and prediction:

It's been an interesting contest so far with some very different approaches to St Magnus.

The best came from Brighouse who had that extra touch of magic about them today and lead the way at the halfway point for us. Dyke was superb - in a very contest orientated mode, whilst it is the best we have heard Rothwell for some considerable time. They were high class today - no doubt about it.

Behind these there is a big gap.

Grimethorpe and Carlton Main to come though, so it's not been won just yet.

Half way prediction:
1. Brighouse & Rastrick
2. Black Dyke
3. Rothwell Temperance

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 18:42:50

Championship Section:

7. Yorkshire Imperial Urquhart Travel (Stig Maersk)

A troubled open never quite seemed at ease, but it soon recovers poise. The obvious problem here is the lack of dynamic contrast - everything seems on one level, whilst the perc colour and texture is somewhat subdued.

It's all a bit bolted together in places - lacking flow and malleability. Sop hits a superb top D - one to make the little silver stars appear in the eyeballs before we rather traipse through the lyrical Var 4. A bit of a missed opportunity here - as euph and cornet in particular sounded fine players who would have relished a bit more time to show their obvious artistry.

Again - it sounds so compartmentalised - sections of decent work that stubbornly don't somehow connect together with ease.

The choices of tempo don't work as it becomes scratchy and lacking precision, but there is just enough left in the tanks to head for a stomping finish and a wham bang finish.

Had its moments, but the lack of connected flow and the missed opportunity to show off the quality when they had the chance may well cost a hard working performance dearly.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 18:17:56

Championship Section:

6. Unite the Union (City of Sheffield)

A rather hesitant opening leads into some inconsistent delivery in the following variations - a little frustratingly as the MD shapes the music so well. It starts to gain composure the longer it goes on - but catch up is not a game you want to play on this piece.

Its solid, hard working stuff this, but the lack of real contrast and forensic detail is obvious. Bravo sop on top D - a real pinger!

Just lacks a touch of confidence is some leading lines to follow - again a pity as the MD has the hook on this music.

Var 5 just sounds rather prosaic - and needs vibrancy to make up for lack of pace. It does gain a gear or two to follow and that hard honest graft can be heard throughout the band. It just lacks that extra level of polish the best have shown today so far.

There is something left in the tank for a bold close though - played at pace and with a thumping old climax or two to end.

A hard working one that certainly showed that the graft had been put in by both MD and band, but the extra level of polish and artistry to really make it come to life wasn't able to be displayed.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 17:54:49

Championship Section:

5. Brighouse & Rastrick (Prof David King)

Now then? Two cornets and a sop to open (with one playing mime games you may suspect but couldn't possible comment).

They get away with it - and soon the focus is on the neat clarity of the technique and lyrical flow in the following variations, which are delivered with subtle gracefulness. There are some wonderful moments to savour here - with the MD allowing a viscous flexibility to permeate the music. It sounds so elegantly played - even at a rapid pulse.

MD stands as if in homage to the euph - and you hear why. Cornet is in same the league. My giddy aunt - this was lovely - sublime.

MD is being so clever here with his tempo choices - allowing the music to sound speedy without actually upping the tempo. When he does it is like putting your foot on an F1 car accelerator. Odd little moments here and there - but so what.

Now we are in orbit territory - superb ensemble sounds and such drive and emotive passion. Its right on the edge with the final chords forcing you back into your seat from 20 yards away.

There was a touch of magic about that one - and the MD took plenty of risks in obtaining it. He manages to be a musical alchemist on these occasions and he was making gold bars by the end.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 17:40:04

Championship Section:

4. Hammonds Saltaire (Morgan Griffiths)

A safe opening ideas into a well negotiated first two variations that combine solid technique and flowing lyricism. This has been solidly constructed by the MD and delivered upon by his players.

Build to Var 4 is neatly handled, and the euph then leads with a touch of élan. Its a touch more artisan after this, but you can't fault the solid delivery and the way the music flows with such purpose.

More sensible tempo choices follow - just a bit under the red line limit, but its just in the right gear - just. The question mark is raised in the finale which is inconsistent in execution.

It builds with purpose and good sense to the final ride for home, which although sounded a little tired and scrappy retains its vibrancy and an extra bit of oomph for the final few chords.

A very well managed account from the MD - and acted upon by his band. Not a thriller by any means, but a high class bit of playing that had been well worked out in advance and delivers on the day.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 17:14:25

Championship Section:

3. Black Dyke (Dr Nicholas Childs)

The sop/rep axis play the opening solidly and it leads into a spacious opening section that isn't played at optimum speed to enhance the clarity at a generous dynamic.

There are a couple of moments that raise the odd eyebrow, but the MD is being very malleable with the music - especially at phrase endings. You can hear the intention to bring the detail through - and it is heard.

Superb euph leads the way and is followed by solo cornet who adds rep flourish to his display of artistry. This was such high class stuff. The choice of tempo allows such clarity to come through in Var 5 - and the display of technique in the finale is vintage stuff - aided by prominent xylo.

Now comes the turbo booster power - and the ride for home is superb playing: the shackles are off and the band goes into overdrive. Huge chords lead into a spine crunching end.

A performance of the very highest class - although not without risks musically and technically. A fantastic contest performance constructed with a very specific aim in mind - and it may very well achieve it in spades.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 16:53:49

Championship Section:

2. Hepworth (Michael Fowles)

A troubled start robs confidence and the opening variation takes so long to settle with clarity and precision. It recovers in the lyrical interlude to follow, but this is already playing catch up.

This is very inconsistent - some great playing interspersed with scratchiness and imprecision all the way to Var 4.

At last - lovely stuff from soloists and ensemble: A bit heart on sleeve but so musically shaped.

MD uses his nous and takes a notch off the tempo to successfully gain clarity - and it works. Well managed playing this. The finale goes at a lick and some balances go awry before final slightly untidy ride for home, which is a bomper of a climax or three.

The poor start meant that this was playing catch up almost from the word go - and never quite caught up lost ground. An inconsistent one from Hepworth this - despite the MDs fine lead.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 16:30:45

Championship Section:

1. Rothwell Temperance (David Roberts)

A safe start leads into precise and detailed development. Care is taken by the MD over the dynamic contrast and the tempo markers, although the pulse is maintained well.

Some slight scratchy moments or two in places, but that underlying pulse isn't lost. Bravo sop on top D before Var 4, which features bravura euph and tasteful solo cornet. Some inner lines are less secure, but this has been laid out with thought and care by MD.

Links before finale itch a bit and it takes a while to settle into a coherent and clearly defined pace, but the adherence to the dynamic contrasts work well. Now it builds to its glory and climax with real power.

Its rounded off with a flourish - bold as brass even with over reigning timp. Huge final few chords.

A fine marker from Rothwell - bold and bravura, even if it was a touch scrappy in places. As good as we have heard them play for a good while - and it emanated from the very sensible musical approach of the MD.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 16:23:34

Championship Section Draw:

Championship Section:
Test Piece: 'St Magnus' - Kenneth Downie

Sunday 2nd March
Draw: 3pm
Commence: 4.30pm

Adjudicators: David Read MBE and Stephen Roberts

1. Rothwell Temperance (David Roberts)
2. Hepworth (Michael Fowles)
3. Black Dyke (Dr Nicholas J Childs)
4. Hammonds Saltaire (Morgan Griffiths)
5. Brighouse & Rastrick (Prof David King)
6. Unite the Union (City of Sheffield) (David Hirst)
7. Yorkshire Imperial Urquhart Travel (Stig Maersk)
8. Marsden Silver Prize (Glyn Williams)
9. Skelmanthorpe (Martin Hall)
10. Hebden Bridge (Sean Conway)
11. Drighlington (Jim Davies)
12. Grimethorpe Colliery (Dr. Robert Childs)
13. Carlton Main Frickley Colliery (Phillip McCann)

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 15:51:39

Championship Section

Championship Section will start at 4.30pm, we will post the draw when the judges go in the box.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 15:48:28

Section 4 Results:

Fourth Section:
Test Piece: 'Three Spanish Impressions for Brass Band' - Alan Fernie

Sunday 2nd March
Draw: 11.30am
Commence: 1.00pm

Adjudicators: Anne Crookston and Alan Morrison

1.Clifton & Lightcliffe ‘B’(John Clay)
2.Rockingham (Rob Straw)
3.Maltby Miners (Terry Clifford)
4.Oughtibridge (Gavin Somerset)
5.Thurcroft Welfare (Garry Hallas)
6.Gawthorpe Brass ‘85’ (John Edward)
7.Huddersfield & Ripponden (Michael Cox)
8.Deepcar (Lindon Bolt)

withdrawn:Golcar (Joseph Whelan)

Soloist: Cornet (Clifton & Lightcliffe 'B')
Percussion Section: Clifton & Lightcliffe 'B'
Youngest Player: Clifton & Lightcliffe 'B'

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 15:12:20

Section 4:


What a tricky piece this has proved to be. The first eighteen bars alone will have given the players and conductors a few sleepless nights.

For judges, Anne Crookston and Alan Morrison, it could be nothing more than personal preference today with the stylistic approach of a couple of bands just getting the nod from their rivals.

We think it will be close though.

4BR Prediction

4BR’s Malcolm Wood has been listening to the Fourth Section and has gone for the following:

1. Maltby
2. Rockingham
3. Clifton
4. Huddersfield
5. Thurcroft
6. Deepcar

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 15:08:57

Section 4:

8. Huddersfield & Ripponden (Michael Cox)

It’s not a bad brooding opening section, nice and dark and well balanced.

Really good stuff in the Waltz with a nice style and balanced sound being in evidence..

The final ‘Fandango’ is a tasty bold affair that works

7. Maltby Miners (Terry Clifford)

It’s a nice dark opening section, although not everything gels together. The Waltz is light and delicate, but again not without a few little gremlins along the way tuning wise

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 14:35:11

Section 4:

6. Deepcar (Lindon Bolt)

The opening broods nicely and is well thought out by the MD with some nice sounds. The waltz is romantic and delicate with the closing Fandango really finding the band in its best form.

5.Gawthorpe Brass ‘85’ (John Edward)

Tricky opening section from Gawthorpe Brass ’85 that takes time to settle but when it does it certainly gets the Spanish mood.

The waltz is not without is fragilities whilst the closing movement doesn’t quite click into gear and tiredness is evident.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 14:21:44

4BR Editor's viewpoint:

It may be a pastiche piece, but what a clever bit of writing from Alan Fernie.

How on earth the publishers made all the errors on this though is beyond me - it's not exactly as detailed as St Magnus is it now?

The first movement broods darkly like a dodgy Spanish waiter lurking behind a Benidorm bar, whilst the Basque waltz is a lovely picture postcard of early blossoming love on the dance floor - more bits of give and take, back and forth, will she won't she. The finale is a lovely romp with a touch of capricious Spanish bluff and thunder.

Each of the bands have brought something out of the music - with some intelligent leadership from the rostrum and some cracking percussion playing adding real colour and texture.

You suspect all the bands have enjoyed this one in rehearsal despite the dodgy notes and mistakes.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 14:06:59

Section 4:

3. Rockingham (Rob Straw)

Rockingham produces an opening Spanish Impression that isn’t without a shaky moment or two, but controlled nonetheless. The waltz proves a little tricky at times but full marks for perseverance.

The ‘Fandago’ opening is bold and quick and doesn’t half move it times and this proves to give an exciting ending.

4. Thurcroft Welfare (Garry Hallas)

Garry Hallas returns to the St George’s Hall podium to conduct his second band of the day.

The opening section proves just as tricky as it has for other bands today, but its nicely styled and there is some good ensemble playing on show.

The Waltz is a lovely little Spanish delicacy that contains some good playing, whilst the ‘Fandango’ certainly sees the band go for it big time.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 13:33:55

Section 4:

2. Oughtibridge (Gavin Somerset)

Outighbridge settles nicely in the opening brooding movement. The waltz is nicely portrayed with a touch of romanticism. The upbeat concluding section moves freely with good ensemble and percussion work and it closes well.

1. Clifton & Lightcliffe ‘B’(John Clay)

Clifton’s opening Spanish movement broods in style and is nicely controlled. The waltz is nice and romantic, with a tidy bit of playing.

The closing fandango is nice and lyrical. A good marker this.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 13:03:00

Section 4

Off we go then, Anne Crookston & Alan Morrison judging just 8 bands - Golcar has withdrawn.

Malcolm Wood is giving his opinions on the playing this afternoon on 4BR.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 12:45:41

Section 4 Draw

Fourth Section:
Test Piece: 'Three Spanish Impressions for Brass Band' - Alan Fernie

Sunday 2nd March
Draw: 11.30am
Commence: 1.00pm

Adjudicators: Anne Crookston & Alan Morrison

Clifton & Lightcliffe ‘B’(John Clay) 1
Deepcar (Lindon Bolt) 6
Gawthorpe Brass ‘85’ (John Edward) 5
Huddersfield & Ripponden (Michael Cox) 8
Maltby Miners (Terry Clifford) 7
Oughtibridge (Gavin Somerset) 2
Rockingham (Rob Straw) 3
Thurcroft Welfare (Garry Hallas) 4

Withdrawn: Golcar (Joseph Whelan)

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 12:40:56


Second Section:

1. Elland Silver (Daniel Brooks)
2. Knottingley Silver (Dr. Owen Wedgwood)
3. Emley (Garry Hallas)
4. Lindley (Chris Lewis)
5. Kippax (David Lancaster)
6. Chapeltown (Andrew Dennis)
7. Old Silkstone (Simon Kerwin)
8. Dodworth Colliery M.W. (Eliot J Darwin)
9. Dronfield Genquip (John Davis)
10. Skelmanthorpe Prospect (Philip Garlick)
11. Horbury Victoria (Duncan Beckley)

Best Soloist:Samantha Harrison (cornet) - Elland Silver
Youngest Player: Bronte Wilkinson (aged 13) of Kippax

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 11:51:18

Second Section Prediction:

What an enjoyable contest - with each of the bands bringing something out of the set test - especially musically.

Lots of playing with real character, style and brio to go with the wit and warmth.

Hard to call this but there was a confidence about Kippax that should win through with Elland for us, but close behind will be Knottingley, Lindley, Horbury Victoria and Dodworth.

1. Kippax
2. Elland Sikver
3. Knottingley
4. Lindley
5. Horbury Victoria
6. Dodworth

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 11:23:40

Second Section:

11. Skelmanthorpe Prospect (Philip Garlick)

What an enjoyable approach by the MD. Not everything came off, but there was a pulsating lightness of touch to a great of the work on display - helped by a great perc section that added subtle texture and colour.

Just a little fragile in too many places to make a mark on the podium slots, but the desire to find the elegance in the musical writing was a delight.

A not quite one - but still plenty to sit back and enjoy.

10. Kippax (David Lancaster)

A confident approach pays off with the MD asking for, and gaining a great deal of contrast in colour, texture and style.

A few nervous moments just detract a little, but the musical flow on display is very persuasive - aided by neat solo lines and dynamic control.

Just got a little raw in the finale chase - but this was a bit of bold and at times, brilliant Chaucer inspired music making.

9. Emley (Garry Hallas)

A real real whizzer from Emley - full of colour, vibrancy and energy that doesn't let up from start to finish.

Enjoyable stuff this - with the MD bringing the character out. Not subtle - but Chaucer isn't at times - it is a bit fruity!

A different one from much that we have heard today - but none the worse for that.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 10:52:36

Second Section:

8. Knottingley Silver (Dr Owen Wedgewood)

There was something very engaging about this performance despite the obvious minor errors that just took a layer of polish off a well buffed set of portraits.

Each of the movements had defined musical character - especially a warmly witty Wife of Bath and finale that was paced so well.

Great warm ensemble sounds and almost medieval pulse that drew to the most convincing of conclusions.

7. Chapletown (Andrew Dennis)

Another MD who sought the character of the music - and it nearly came off in each the four movements.

Just a little too untidy in places - but a fine principal cornet and some neat touches kept you interested from start to finish.

Not quite up there today for us, but plenty to commend in a well thought out musical approach.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 10:46:52

Second Section:
Half way point analysis from the 4BR Editor:

We are currently having a five minute comfort break - and time to ponder a highly enjoyable first half of a contest that has benefitted from a well chosen set work that has placed the emphasis on finding the right musical style in addition to the correct technical substance.

Getting the different characteristics from each of the subtly different movements is the key - and you have to say that each of the MDs has done that in slightly different ways so far.

There has been some great solo playing too and the overall standard has been good.

More to come - but this is turning into a cracking contest.


Its still up for grabs, but Elland lead the way for us by a very short head from Lindley, and Horbury Victoria

1. Elland
2. Lindley
3. Horbury Victoria

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 10:13:06

Second Section:

6. Dronfield Genquip (John Davis)

An elegant, subtle approach gives this performance an air of refinement. Not everything comes off, but there are moments when the music lifts effortlessly off the page.

Its like hearing Chaucer read by Donald Sinden - fruity and tastefully posh. Nothing overdone - but it may just have need a little more primary colour brio especially in the slightly tired finale. An interesting one though.

5. Old Silkstone (Simon Kerwin)

An elegantly laid out rendition that was just tarnished by a few too many small, but noticeable minor errors.

A pity that as each of the movements had subtle character traits and musical nuance aided by a fine solo cornet lead.

One that had the potential to be a real cracker - but never quite realised it.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 09:42:27

Second Section:

4. Dodworth Colliery M.W. (Eliot J. Darwin)

The MD delves right into the character in the music - making it colourful, vibrant and flowing. Each movement is well defined and stylish - especially the Wife of Bath - played with a neat sense of puzzled intrigue.

Lots of neat touches despite the occasional moments of imprecision - and a cracking close that the MD giving it the full blown treatment in more ways than one.

3. Horbury Victoria (Duncan Beckley)

A well structured account this that was laid out with well defined style and substance.

It just lacked a bit of precision and stability at times, but the flow of the musical meant that it was full of medieval vitality and brio.

A performance borne of experienced contest conducting sense from the middle.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 09:25:19

Second Section:

2. Lindley (Chris Lewis)

A more robust interpretation from Lindley - colourful and full of character - although they were more Dickensian at times - just a touch overdone in places.

There was a lovely full balance to the ensemble sound though - topped by a wonderful euph and tasteful sop.

A bold one that left an impression though.

1. Elland Silver (Daniel Brooks)

What a fine marker to start off the day - four movements that had detail, balance, warmth, wit and robustness - all when required at the right moment.

Some excellent solo work enhanced things too - especially from the soprano who was as capricious as the Wife of Bath herself.

Lots to commend in a performance of real musical character.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 08:46:38

The start of what could be a momentous day here in Bradford.

The contest aperitifs are provided by the competitors in the Second and Fourth Sections, but the main course will be tucked into around 4.30pm when we have the battle to see who claims the domestic Yorkshire bragging rights on 'St Magnus'.

Kenneth Downie is in town (and he enjoyed Liverpool's victory yesterday) and keen to check out how the bands approach the original version of his work.....

That's to come though - but we start by with the action in the Second Section in about 15 minutes time.

Yorkshire • Sunday 2, 08:41:21

Second Section:
Test Piece: 'Chaucer's Tunes' - Dr Michael Ball

Sunday 2nd March
Draw: 8.00am
Commence: 9.00am

Adjudicators: David Horsfield & Dennis Wilby

Chapeltown (Andrew Dennis) 7
Dodworth Colliery M.W. (Eliot J Darwin) 4
Dronfield Genquip (John Davis) 6
Elland Silver (Daniel Brooks) 1
Emley (Garry Hallas) 9
Horbury Victoria (Duncan Beckley) 3
Kippax (David Lancaster) 10
Knottingley Silver (Dr. Owen Wedgwood) 8
Lindley (Chris Lewis) 2
Old Silkstone (Simon Kerwin) 5
Skelmanthorpe Prospect (Philip Garlick) 11

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 18:38:47

That's all from St George's Hall in Bradford for the contests today. We hope you have enjoyed our coverage.

Section 2 starts at 9.00am tomorrow morning.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 18:35:43


First Section:
Test Piece: 'Cry of the Mountain' - Howard Lorriman

Adjudicators: David Read MBE and Mike Kilroy

1. City of Bradford (Lee Skipsey)
2. Hatfield (Stan Lippeatt)
3. South Yorkshire Police (Leigh Baker)
4. Meltham & Meltham Mills (Norman Law)
5. Strata Brass (David Holling)
6. Clifton & Lightcliffe (John Clay)
7. Cornerstone (Damian Wileman)
8. Stannington (Kevin Wadsworth)
9. Barnsley Brass (William Rushworth)
10. Hade Edge (Jonathan Beatty)
11. Frickley/South Elmsall (John Morahan))

Wakefield Metropolitan (Michael Howley) (disqualified under registration rule 9a)

Best Soloist: Andrew Kennedy (euphonium) - Hatfield
Youngest Player: Georgina Green (aged13) of South Yorkshire Police

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 18:00:46


It’s been an intriguing contest of what it must be said is a very curious piece of music. City of Bradford from the late draw of eleven have taken the title for us, but thereafter, it is going to be a very tight scrap for the second qualification place and podium places.

4BR Prediction

4BR’s Malcolm Wood has gone for:

1. City of Bradford
2. Hatfield
3. Strata Brass
4. South Yorkshire Police
5. Meltham & Meltham Mills
6. Cornerstone Brass

Section 1

12. Stannington (Kevin Wadsworth

The sun gently rises as Kevin Wadsworth sets the scene on a performance that had lots to admire, but at times it didn’t always knit together in the way it should despite some good ensemble amd dynamic work.

11.City of Bradford (Lee Skipsey)

Whilst there was some tricky opening moments, City of Bradford soon settled to set the scene on a performance that was full of musical quality.

Superbly shaped, intuitively thought out, Lee Skipsey let his ensemble play and they responded magnificently.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 17:33:01

Section 1

10.Meltham & Meltham Mills (Norman Law)

The sun rises effectively over the mountain—lots of nice musical colours are portrayed and there is a nice ambience to the music.

The brass and percussion are not the first to have problems today in the tricky ‘Ice and Snow’ section whilst there are some tasty moments in the slower section.

As the ‘Avalanche’ comes to the fore, chaos and pandemonium break out in appreciation of the quality that was on show.

9.South Yorkshire Police (Leigh Baker)

It’s a nice effective opening section with the rising of the sun descriptively portrayed. There’s a nice feel to the music which maintains effective dynamics and tempo markings although it’s a bit loose in places.

The slower section isn’t without the odd uncertain moment, but there is drama and tension in the ‘Avalanche’ closing movement, which works.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 17:02:33

4BR Editor's opinion:

No fault of the bands here, but they are Ill served by this test piece.

Its leaves so little scope to try and construct a performance in each of its sections that by the time you think the music is developing somewhere it actually meanders in another direction.

There's just not enough in it to stretch the bands musically, although technically a few of them have tripped over their desire to impose their authority and add a pinch more exciting texture and colour.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 16:54:46

Section 1

8.Wakefield Metropolitan (Michael Howley)

It’s not a bad opening with nice sounds in the lower end for Wakefield to set its stall out. MD, Michael Howley brings a nice pulse to the music and the band goes with it and this proves to be effective.

The quieter third section sits well with some fine playing before the adrenaline and energy comes alive in the ‘Avalanche’ movement.

7. Hade Edge (Jonathan Beatty)

Atmospheric opening works well with some nice sounds in lower brass. Jonathan Beatty gives the music the chance to come to the fore, but there is some looseness in the ensemble at times.

The dynamic and tempos are not over done, but there is a hint of tiredness within the ranks in the closing ‘Avalanche’ movement.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 16:16:54

Section 1 Comfort Break

Malcolm Wood has been listening and writing about the bands here. This what he thinks.

An interesting contest is unfolding with the descriptive piece of music. We’ve heard some committed accounts but it’s certainly up for grabs.

1. Hatfield
2. Strata
3. Clifton

Section 1

6. Strata (David Holling)

It’s not a bad opening from Strata with some lovely effective sounds coming from around the stand.

There’s a nice flow to the music with the MD not pushing the dynamics out of their comfort zone—you hear the contrasts whilst the closing ‘Avalanche’ is full of colour.

5. Barnsley Brass (William Rushworth)

Descriptive opening section works well for Barnsley Brass. It’s a rendition that symbolises its MD—William Rushworth—fully committed and passionate to the cause.

It’s an interesting mountain portrayal with some lovely playing in particular in the slower section, with lots to admire and nothing overblown. There’s confidence around the stand as they close well.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 16:02:54

4BR Editor's opinion:

As we rather expected, 'Cry of the Mountain' is a decent enough piece that doesn't seem to develop to a satisfying conclusion.

There are lots of seemingly coincidental nods of appreciation to all sorts of other ideas - from Prince Igor to Harmony Music, Sparke to Wilby and all ports in between - but it cries out for more substance.

That means it leaves you rather puzzled too - it neither seems to develop anywhere in particular - not to a glorious summit of achievement for certain.

How it prepares these contenders for the potential challenge of the likes of 'St Magnus' is beyond me - although having 80 so called Championship bands trying to play that is perhaps the crux of the overall problem that this piece simply highlights even more.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 15:46:00

Section 1

4.Cornerstone Brass (Damian Wileman)

A tidy atmospheric opening bodes well and Cornerstone Brass has laid the foundations for its performance. The MD lets the music breathe and gives his players the opportunity to play expressively—there’s a lot of feeling in the music.

The confidence around the stands sees the ensemble play with confidence right through to the end.

3. Hatfield (Stan Lippeatt)

There’s a lovely and effective lower band sound to open. Stan Lippeatt ensures that the atmospheric music is portrayed with real beauty—lots of effective ensemble playing is heard.

It’s heart on the sleeve stuff at times but so neat and tidy. It’s a performance that never pushes the musical boundaries, be it tempo’s or dynamics and it closes confidently.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 15:15:40

Section 1

2. Frickley/South Elmsall (John Morahan)

Mysterious opening that works as sunlight is seen in all its glory. The ice and snow provides a tricky musical portrayal. The ‘Vistas and Distant Peaks’ Section is a bit of a musical roller-coaster at times, not everything is clearly heard whilst the ‘Avalanche’ section doesn’t quite gel together.

1.Clifton & Lightcliffe (John Clay)

Nice atmospheric ‘Awakening’ opening section that sits well as the sun comes out. The slippery, ice section, has some effective dynamics whilst the mountains come into view and the closing section works very well. Good marker.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 14:38:01

Section 1 Draw

First Section:
Test Piece: 'Cry of the Mountain' - Howard Lorriman

Saturday 1st March
Draw: 1.15pm
Commence: 2.45pm

Adjudicators: David Read MBE and Mike Kilroy

Barnsley Brass (William Rushworth) 5
City of Bradford (Lee Skipsey) 11
Clifton & Lightcliffe (John Clay) 1
Cornerstone (Damian Wileman) 4
Frickley/South Elmsall (John Morahan) 2
Hade Edge (Jonathan Beatty) 7
Hatfield (Stan Lippeatt) 3
Meltham & Meltham Mills (Norman Law) 10
South Yorkshire Police (Leigh Baker) 9
Stannington (Kevin Wadsworth) 12
Strata (David Holling) 6
Wakefield Metropolitan (Michael Howley) 8

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 14:36:10


Third Section:
Test Piece: 'Partita for Band' (Postcards from Home) - Professor Philip Wilby

Saturday 1st March
Draw: 9.00am
Commence: 10.30am

Adjudicators: Stan Lippeatt & Alan Morrison

1. Dinnington Colliery (Jonathan Beatty)
2. Wetherby & District Silver (Keiron Anderson)
3. Worsbrough Brass (John Roberts)
4. Slaithwaite (Rob Westacott)
5. Crofton Silver (Kevin Belcher)
6. Armthorpe Elmfield (Haydn Griffiths MBE)
7. Barnsley Metropolitan (Alex Francis)
8. Stanley Newmarket Colliery (Steven Bailey)
9. Linthwaite (Tony Jaeger-Fozard)
10. Lofthouse 2000 (Kevin Holdgate)
11. Garforth (Mark Wildie)

Best Soloist: Jamie Hollings (trombone) - Dinnington Colliery
Youngest Player: Jake Robbins (aged 11) of Barnsley Metropolitan

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 13:53:27


It’s been a very enjoyable contest here in Bradford on a test piece that has proved to be an excellent test for the bands. Both Wetherby & District Silver and Worsbrough Brass delivered accounts in the second half of the contest which should have done enough to get them through to Cheltenham.

That said, Worsbrough Brass produced one of the quicker accounts of the day, so if it doesn’t tickle the fancy of judges Stan Lippeatt & Alan Morrison, then it could be Hobson’s Choice who sneaks in.

Slaithwaite, Barnsley Metropolitan, Dinnington Colliery, Garforth & Linthwaite will be hoping for podium places today.

Malcolm Wood’s top six are:

4BR Prediction:

1. Wetherby & District
2. Worsbrough Brass
3. Slaithwaite
4. Barnsley Metropolitan
5. Dinnington
6. Linthwaite

11.Linthwaite (Tony Jaeger-Smith)

It’s a purposeful start from the West Yorkshire outfit with an effective ‘Dance’ section to follow.

The tricky ‘Sunday Afternoon’ isn’t bad at all in its delivery with the concluding ‘Coronation Day’ sitting nicely on the ear.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 13:31:02

Section 3

10. Wetherby & District Silver (Keiron Anderson)

It’s not a bad opening from Wetherby at all with a free-flowing ‘Dance’ Section to carry them on their way.

Euphonium takes a confident lead which is equalled by cornet in a section that has a nice feel to it. There’s an upbeat feel to the closing ‘Coronation Day’ as well

9. Worsbrough Brass (John Roberts)

John Roberts leads Worsbrough Brass through an enjoyable couple of movements, complete with some neat ensemble and percussion work.

‘Sunday Afternoon’ is nice and chilled, very easy on the ear and there is some excellent playing to be heard in the ‘Coronation Day Parade’ that closes confidently.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 12:59:43

Section 3

8. Armthorpe Elmfield (Haydn Griffiths MBE)

Armthorpe Elmfield opens with bold colours whilst ‘Lord of the Dance’ is delivered with a nice bit of restraint.

Euphonium lead does well in opening bars of a third movement which is a touch cautious and uncertain at times but confidence returns to close an account that didn’t click together in its entirety as well as it could have done.

7. Stanley Newmarket Colliery (Steven Bailey)

Stanley Newmarket opens up after the comfort break with a hint of caution, but they settle with some effective playing in the ‘Dance’ section.

‘Sunday Afternoon’ is more than a touch tricky for the ensemble to execute but full marks from the band for digging in. The closing ‘Coronation Day Parade’ reflects a good sounding ensemble. Top marks for commitment on a piece that tested the band at times.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 12:41:40

Third Section: 4BR Editor's opinion:

Well we thought Philip Wilby's 'Partita' was going to be a stern test - and so it has proved.

Technically it is within the grasp of these bands, but stylistically it has been a different matter - with MDs finding it tough to maintain a secure pulse and flow in each of the movements.

Its the third movement in particular that is finding the bands out - the lilting quality being very difficult to maintain. The first and fourth movements seem pretty well handled, but The Lord of the Dance has been a bit pious at times - a little too stilted and serious.

The best have really made it a happy clappy fleet footed affair - and by doing so have made the music come to life.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 12:33:49

Section 3:
Comfort Break

Malcolm Wood has been enjoying the action in the Third Section.

It’s been an enjoyable contest so far on what has been an excellent test at this level. Halfway and qualification spots still up for grabs with not much between the top two.

1. Slaithwaite
2. Barnsley Metropolitan
3. Garforth

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 12:15:19

Section 3:

6. Garforth (Mark Wildie)

Garforth starts confidently and the opening builds well and there’s some lovely dynamic contrasts in ‘Lord of the Dance’.

‘Sunday Afternoon’ is cautious at times, but band does well whilst the concluding ‘Parade’ is restrained at times and is effective.

5. Lofthouse 2000 (Kevin Holdgate)

Lofthouse 2000 starts well although some of the solo lines have a few nerves, with the second section having nice feel to it.

Euphonium leads well in ‘Sunday Afternoon’—a section nicely portrayed despite some uncertainties at times around the stand. The closing ‘Parade’ section is certain bold, if lacking a bit of clarity at times to round off a fully committed account.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 11:41:21

Section 3:

4. Slaithwaite (Rob Westacott)

It’s bold and controlled from Slaithwaite from the off with a nice musical flow on display—the ‘Dance’ skips along very nicely indeed.

‘Sunday Afternoon’ is warm and sunny, with cold beer on hand, watching the local cricketers do battle—life is good. The closing section doesn’t lack in confidence either ending a well thought out performance.

3. Crofton Silver (Kevin Belcher)

Crofton Silver really go for it from the off with two confident sections that are full of musical passion even if they push the dynamics a touch at times.

The closing sections very much mirrored the first two. No doubting the passion from MD and band, but the execution wasn’t as water tight as it could have been although we heard a fine euphonium on display.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 11:37:47

Third Section:

The obvious traps are starting to be heard in each of the movements - from the need to keep balance and precision in the opening 'Towers and Chimneys', the jollity and lightness of 'Lord of the Dance', lilting flow of the 'Sunday Afternoon' pastorale and the boldness of the 'Coronation Day Parade'.

This a taxing test of style and substance for the bands here - and for the bands to come around the country.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 11:15:15

Third Section:
It's been an interesting start to the day here at Bradford with the ending two bands certainly living up to the town's Latin motto 'Labor Omnia Vincit' - work conquers all.

Just about anyway..

Good to see excellent support in the hall - Postcards is a piece that is proving popular with bands and listeners alike it seems.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 11:06:37

Section 3:

2.Dinnington Colliery (Jonathan Beatty)

Dinnington’s ‘Towers & Chimney’s’ certainly didn’t lack the passion whilst the ‘Dance’ had lots of jollity about it.

‘Sunday Afternoon’ isn’t a relaxed stroll in the park though but full marks for perseverance whilst the ‘Coronation Day Parade’ is full of Yorkshire pride and bombast.

1.Barnsley Metropolitan (Alex Francis)

Barnsley opened up in a confident style that was maintained through the familiar ‘Lord of the Dance’ which was taken at a nice tempo and included good ensemble and percussion work.

There were some tricky moments in the third section, but plenty of confidence on show as they closed, rounded off what wasn’t a bad show at all.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 10:35:43

Third Section:

We are ready for the off!

There is a decent sized crowd in to hear Philip Wilby's 'Partita for Band - Postcards from Home'.

Its a fine piece to start what should be a great weekend of brass band music making.

The whistle goes, Peggy Tomlinson departs stage left and the first competitive notes of the 2014 Area Championships are heard from Barnsley Metropolitan...

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 10:18:03

We will be making regular updates on the performances here throughout the day with our usual opinions and views.

Check out Twitter as well for a few more pithy asides and observations....

Malcolm Wood is giving the Third Section bands the once over....

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 10:10:54


Third Section:
Test Piece: 'Partita for Band' (Postcards from Home) - Professor Philip Wilby

Saturday 1st March
Draw: 9.00am
Commence: 10.30am

Adjudicators: Stan Lippeatt and Alan Morrison

Armthorpe Elmfield (Haydn Griffiths MBE) 8
Barnsley Metropolitan (Alex Francis) 1
Crofton Silver (Kevin Belcher) 3
Dinnington Colliery (Jonathan Beatty) 2
Garforth (Mark Wildie) 6
Linthwaite (Tony Jaeger-Fozard) 11
Lofthouse 2000 (Kevin Holdgate) 5
Slaithwaite (Rob Westacott) 4
Stanley Newmarket Colliery (Steven Bailey) 7
Wetherby & District Silver (Keiron Anderson) 10
Worsbrough Brass (John K. Hopkinson) 9

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 09:59:00

The draw has been made and will be posted when the judges Stan Lippeatt and Alan Morrison are in the box.

The final preparations are being made in the hall by the helpful staff and great organising team led by Peggy Tomlinson before audience is let in and it all kicks off for 2014.

Yorkshire • Saturday 1, 08:00:48

Early morning in Bradford and you suspect that quite few bands are already starting to think of having a final blow through the Third Section set work 'Partita - Postcards from Home' by Philip Wilby before the contest weekend kicks off here at 10.30am.

Plenty to look forward to after an enjoyable evening in good company talking about the great Stanley Boddington with David Read MBE.

The first of around 500 Area performances starts here in just a couple of hours time

Yorkshire • Friday 28, 15:15:51

When it comes to the leading conductors at the Areas then there is no question who is still the man to beat—the late, great Major Peter Parkes.

By heck he racked up the victories - and even if Dr Nicholas Childs claims victory with Black Dyke and Co-operative Funeralcare he will still take at last another couple of years to overtake him.

30 victories: Major Peter Parkes
24: Dr Nicholas Childs
16: Harry Mortimer, Walter Hargreaves
15: Howard Snell
13: Alex Mortimer
12: Melvin White
11: Eric Ball, Stanley Boddington, Dr Robert Childs
10: Dr Keith Wilkinson, Richard Evans, Garry Cutt

Yorkshire • Friday 28, 15:11:46

Just to put you in the mood for any records that may be broken at the Yorkshire Regional Championship this year, then here is the list of all time record breaking Area champions.

Top of list is Reg Vardy, followed by Cory and Virtuosi GUS, Camborne and Co-operative Funeralcare.

Black Dyke is the leading the way in Yorkshire, but Brighouse & Rastrick can draw level with them if David King and his lads and lasses claim victory on Sunday night.

33 victories: Reg Vardy
29: Cory
21: Virtuosi GUS
20: Camborne, Co-operative Funeralcare
19: Black Dyke
18: Brighouse & Rastrick, Foden's
16: Whitburn
15: Parc & Dare, Desford Colliery
14: CWS (Manchester), Sun Life, Redbridge Brass
13: Morris Motors, Fairey
11: Crookhall Bradley, Grimethorpe Colliery
10: St Dennis, Hanwell, Tredegar, Leyland

Yorkshire • Thursday 27, 15:22:54

The bands will be putting the final touches to their test piece preparations from 'St Magnus' to 'Three Spanish Impressions' - so why not see if you can get along and blag your way into a bandroom for a final sneak preview before the action starts at St George's Hall on the weekend.

Yorkshire • Thursday 27, 14:40:43

For Yorkshire preview & predictions go to:

Full list of bands

Reading Spring Gardens Brass Band - Reading Festival of Brass: Open Workshop Rehearsal

Saturday 27 April • St Laurence Church, Reading RG1 3EJ

London Central Fellowship Band - Hemel Hempstead Salvation Army

Saturday 27 April • Waterhouse St, Hemel Hempstead HP1 1ES

Haverhill Silver Band - Friends' Requests

Sunday 28 April • Haverhill Arts Centre, High Street, Haverhill, Suffolk CB9 8AR

Boarshurst Silver Band - Sunday Brass Concert - Stockport Silver Band

Sunday 28 April • Boarshurst Band Club, Greenbridge Lane OL3 7EW

Contest: European Brass Band Championshiips

Friday 3 May • Palanga Konsortu, Vytauta st. 43, LT-00135, Palanga 43, LT-00135

Mereside Brass

April 23 • MERESIDE BRASS (Rudheath,Northwich) are looking for a FRONT ROW CORNET & a 2nd EUPH to complete our line up. We are a friendly 4th Section band with a sensible calendar of jobs and band social events and enjoy occasional contests. Come and give us a try!

Bilton Silver Rugby Band

April 23 • Applications are invited for a Euphonium player to join our Rugby based band. Bilton Silver (Rugby) band are currently contesting in the Championship section and has a varied programme of events spread throughout the year.

Chinnor Silver

April 23 • We are looking to strengthen our team ready for 2025 and require Bass (Bb or Eb), Bass trombone, Soprano and percussion players. We are a very friendly, progressive 2nd section band who will start next year at the top of their regional rankings table.

Steve Pritchard-Jones

Conductor, Adjudicator, Teacher


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